Women-Led Impact Investor Challenge (Founders)


It’s beyond time for women and non-binary founders to get equal investment in their startups. Let’s change the landscape, together.

Supported in part by funding from the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program.

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The Women-Led Impact Investor Challenge is a value-packed program, empowering purpose-driven founders to prepare their impact business for investment from like-minded, supportive impact investors. Spring has thoughtfully designed a two-stage program that addresses the unique challenges women founders face as they raise funds.

Top founders will be selected for a cohort to dig into an Investment Readiness Catalyst, receiving bespoke financial and legal support. Then, they will be joined by a cohort of impact investors for the Impact Investor Challenge, creating invaluable lifelong connections in a collaborative, mutually supportive environment.

Together, the founders and investors will learn about impact measurement, due diligence and more in practice while building relationships. Selected founders will be invited to continue to the next stages in the Challenge, culminating in a pitch finale where one company takes home a pooled cohort investment of up to $100K.

Applications are closed for 2024. We had our biggest number of applications ever and are excited to share our Top 15 Founders with you.

What You Can Expect

Through the Women-Led Impact Investor Challenge, you can expect to:

  • Have the opportunity to be chosen for up to $100K in dilutive funding
  • Join a supportive, like-minded community of impactful founders & investors
  • Get invaluable analysis and insights on your due diligence materials & investment memo, which support you within the program and beyond.
  • Pitch in a safe environment without the bias & BS (and learn how to manage it in other pitches)
  • Participate online from wherever you are – no relocation required
  • Get access to our Spring Perks Platform, with access to over $1M in discounts on must-have services like Google Workspace, Hubspot, Slack, accounting support and more.

Eligibility for this Challenge

We define “women-led” as any or all of the following:

Your company must be solving a social or environmental issue and contributing to one or more of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. All sectors are welcome, with the following being prioritized:

You are seeking pre-seed to seed fund and are an incorporated Canadian company that is a private issuer according to Canadian securities laws.

What Founders Like You Have to Say

How can the Spring and the Impact Investor Challenge help your company? Some of our IIC winners share their experiences as impact founders and Spring alum, including Dr. Karolina Valente of VoxCell BioInnovation who walked away with $293K from the 2022 Women-Led IIC.

Program Timeline

We kick things off with investment readiness training and hands-on preparation (hello legal support!) before bringing the investors into the program. Here’s how it breaks down:

Supported in part by:

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This is how we change the system

Apply for the opportunity to be a 2024 Women-Led Impact Investor Challenge Founder.

apply By feb. 23rd